Language Learning Articles

  Chinese Language Learnerspresenting 
Chinese Made Easier for
Chinese Language Learners

Where to buy Chinese Made Easier 1-5
It is available in China from:
Shaanxi Normal University Press (Xi'an)
(029) 8530 7864
By mail order from Ellen Zhu (Beijing)
(010) 6711 8567
Chinese Made Easier Book 1
Chinese Made Easier Book 2
Chinese Made Easier Book 3
Chinese Made Easier Book 4
Chinese Made Easier Book 5
Chinese Made Easier Workbook for Book 3
Chinese Made Easier Workbook for Book 4
Ellen Zhu gives a 5% discount on orders over RMB400 (USD 50) and 10% discount on orders over RMB1200
(USD 150). The discount is calculated on the book price only, not the transportation fee which is charged in full.
It is also available in America from: 
Update on Chinese Made Easier Books 1-5
Chinese Made Easier 1-5 is now revised and the revised edition is now on sale. It is slightly smaller in size (i.e. smaller than the present A4 size). A newly recorded CD (MP3) of the vocabulary & dialogues is sold with each textbook. CME Book 5 has completely new drawings.
The revised edition includes:
a) pictures for many of the vocabulary words
b) sections on radicals
c) extra activities for use by the teacher in class.
Workbooks to go with CME Books 3 & 4 are also sold by Shaanxi Normal University Press.
IncrediFlashCards is an excellent flashcard program for computers written specifically for Chinese Made Easier. The flashcards switch from pinyin to Hanzi in the same way as the book. The Chinese characters are also colored according to which tone they are. Download free from:
Pleco & Yellowbridge also have sets of flashcards for the vocabulary of Chinese Made Easier. When you purchase the excellent Pleco Dictionary, you can download all the flashcards for CME into your PDA free:
CME vocabulary is also available as a memory game:
There is also an online program for studying CME:
China Curriculum
Here is a suggested curriculum, designed for those who want to live and work in China, and make friends with Chinese people:
Chinese Made Easier Books 1-5 (lessons 1-70) shi2yong4 su4cheng2 han4yu3
Specifically designed to meet the day-to-day communicative needs of westerners who are living and working in China.
The content is both practical and relevant.
The Chinese grammar is explained simply and clearly.
The romanization is gradually phased out over the whole course rather than the all-then-nothing approach of most Chinese textbooks.
Learning to read Chinese characters is also introduced in manageable bites.
Chinese Made Easier can be purchased in America:
Chinese Traditions & Festivals
Zhong1guo2de jie2ri4 yu3 min2su2
[start this after CME lesson 60]
An easy Chinese reader covering Chinese festivals and traditions. This book will also help you strengthen your character recognition.
Speaking Chinese About China (Vol. 1 & 2)
Hua4 shuo1 zhong1guo2
It deals with Chinese geography, history, politics, economy, society, education and philosophy, hence giving you a general overall picture of Chinese culture.
Chinese Made Easier: published by Shaanxi Normal University Press
Chinese Traditions & Festivals: published by Shaanxi Normal University Press
Speaking Chinese About China: published by Sinolingua, Beijing 

For more details on these textbooks, see the language learning article "Some Good Textbooks"
First Steps in Chinese
First Steps in Chinese is specially designed for the person who has only a few months to learn some basic Chinese.
Each lesson is in a user-friendly format so that learning Chinese should be fun. The textbook is heavy on communication and light on reading and writing.
The first 10 lessons cover the pronunciation of Mandarin Chinese, as well as starting you off on some simple sentence patterns.
Lessons 11-33 cover topics which you will meet frequently while living in China.
The content of each lesson is intensely practical. The authors have assumed you are living in China and want to communicate on everyday topics as quickly as possible. So only useful vocabulary, immediately relevant to your everyday needs, is included.
The authors have worked hard at trying to make the grammar explanations as simple and clear as possible, avoiding complicated linguistic terminology.
Each lesson contains an activity related to the topic to get you using the words and discussing the topic with your teacher.
First Steps in Chinese can be purchased in America:
Specialized Language textbooks
After you have completed the "China Curriculum", you may need to learn Chinese in specialized areas. Here are some recommended textbooks.

yi1xue2 han4yu3 -- shi2xi2pian1 (Books 1-3) published by Beijing University Press is an excellent series of textbooks for medics.

How to Take a Medical History in Chinese by Annelies Wilder-Smith


jing1mao4 qia4tan2 ABC (Volumes 1 & 2) by Liu2 Li4 Ying1 (published by Beijing Language & Cultural University [previously Beijing Language Institute])
An excellent book for those needing business-related language. Easy to study.

gong1si1 hanyu by Li3 Li4 & Ding1 An1 Qi2 (published by Beijing University) is also an excellent book for those needing business-related language. Slightly more advanced than jingmao qiatan ABC, but is not over-specialized.

Reader in Social Development by Adrian Zenz (published by Jianhua Foundation, Tianjin). Tel: 022 2392 6614


Home | Articles